When your child changes all their teeth, it is important to see an orthodontist. Today many children have a misaligned jaw or crooked teeth.  This problem can be corrected only by an orthodontist, which is professionally trained to work on perfecting smiles. To make the teeth have a harmonious aspect, orthodontists usually use:

  • Brackets
  • Bands
  • Wires
  • Rubber bands
  • Retainers
  • Headgears

In this article, you will read about common orthodontic problems and based on that you can make a correct decision about the orthodontic treatment your child needs.

The types of braces and appliances

Today there are a lot of dental appliances that can help your child. But the most efficient devices to straighten teeth and correct misaligned bites are the braces. They apply pressure to the jaws and teeth to move them into the right position. But you don’t have to be afraid of braces. Today there are many options to make braces virtually invisible. In the past, the teeth were fully banded, but today brackets are bonded on the surface of each tooth. There are types of brackets that are even placed on the inner part of the teeth making them almost unnoticeable.

Braces are made from:

  • Ceramic
  • Stainless steel
  • Plastic
  • A combination of more materials

Depending on the material, braces can have a clear or colored appearance. The wires can be made from a material like nickel-titanium or copper-titanium and are longer lasting and don’t require so many adjustments like the stainless steel wires.

You can also try the new clear, invisible “trays” that straighten teeth just like regular braces but without using wires and traditional braces. These are a perfect option for the people who require fast and simple orthodontic work. This method requires custom made, removable trays that put pressure on your teeth, moving them slowly into the correct position. It is not recommended for people who need extensive orthodontic work.

Other appliances used by orthodontists are:

TADs (temporary anchorage devices) are mini-screws that have 6-12 millimeters in length and 1.2-2 millimeters in diameter. These are fixed to the bone and apply force to move the teeth. This procedure is becoming more common in denture treatments.

Rubber bands (elastics) are used when more force is needed to place the teeth and jaw into the correct position.  You can choose the color you desire for the rubber bands.

Headgears are attached to the braces from the back of the head. They can be also removable and are used to put extra force to move the teeth and jaws in place. Headgears can be worn at night while sleeping.

Retainers are used to keep the teeth in place after the removal of the braces. They are used because the teeth need time to settle into their new position. By wearing them, you prevent your teeth from shifting. Some retainers are fixed, and some are removable.

In the second part of this article, you will find out how an orthodontist is better than a dentist at straightening teeth. In addition, you will learn when it is the right time to see an orthodontist and how to teach your child to take care of their teeth while wearing braces.